Never say the United Church of Christ doesn’t have influence. It appears their “Bring Betty Broadband” campaign (previously noted here and here, and which is hosted by So We Might See, which in turn was within the last week identified by Google as an “attack page” and distributor of malicious software–how’s that for irony?) has had the desire effect–in Finland. From CNN:

Finland has become the first country in the world to make broadband internet access a legal right for all citizens.

The legislation, which came into effect Thursday, forces telecom operators to provide a reasonably priced broadband connection with a downstream rate of at least one megabit per second (mbs) to every permanent residence and office, the Finnish government said in a statement.

“From now on a reasonably priced broadband connection will be everyone’s basic right in Finland,” said Finnish communications minister Suvi Linden. “This is absolutely one of the government’s most significant achievements in regional policy and I am proud of it.

“I hope that people will make use of the opportunity and turn to telecom operators in the area they live.”

Finland is one of the world’s most wired nations, and numbers corporations such as telecommunications giant Nokia among its successes.

“One of the world’s most wired nations”–they must be drinking way too much coffee in Helsinki, if they think that broadband access is a “basic right.” Next up, the Finns will be enshrining as “basic rights” the right to gold medals in cross-country skiing at the Olympics, the right to keep and bear moose, and the right to throw reindeer meatballs (Lihapullat) at Lutheran ministers.

In other news, the words “right,” previously buried at Forest Lawn, was disinterred and its mutilated remains dropped into Lake Saimaa, from which it would take a U.S. Navy mini-submersible to recover them.

(Via Diane Suffern of the Contrarian Bee and the Green Room at Hot Air.)

UPDATE: That should have been Diane, not “Debbie.” Must have had the second Addams Family movie on my mind, or something… By the way, I should also have said take a look at the whole post. Diane also scopes out the future of American education via Sweden. Chilling stuff.